History Today Subscription Offer

Kenneth Clark

Much of our evidence for the past comes from paintings and sculpture. But how reliable is this source? Kenneth Clark examines the history of forgeries in art and discusses the motives of the forgers and the reasons for which what now seem to us obvious forgeries were accepted in their time as authentic. He concludes with a discussion of the ethical problems raised by forgeries.

Da Vinci's scientific observations proved inseparable from his intentions as a painter, Kenneth Clark writes. But as a disciple of experience ahead of his time, the impracticability of Da Vinci's visions would come to haunt him.

Sir Kenneth Clark discovers echoes of both ancient and modern in a true Renaissance man.